Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe
Fast Forward

Here’s How Mnuchin’s Managed To Survive In Trumpworld

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin stays out of the limelight — unless he’s defending his boss.

Many are surprised Mnuchin, a moderate with no prior experience in politics, would last this long in the White House, as noted in a Bloomberg profile. His strategy for remaining a player in the ever-changing administration was to stay silent, keeping any hint of disagreement with President Trump out of the press, and put out fires following a controversial moment or tweet.

Before winning, Trump openly said that Mnuchin, then his friend and finance chairman, would be his Treasury secretary, Bloomberg reported. Mnuchin intently prepared for the job interview — one person familiar with the vetting process says he sat in on at least one of the president-elect’s interviews with another candidate for the position.

After he was confirmed, Mnuchin said every living former Treasury secretary gathered for a dinner in his honor. “You realize the seriousness of this job and the tradition that this goes all the way back to Alexander Hamilton,” he said.

Lloyd Blankfein, Goldman’s current CEO, told Bloomberg that he was confused to why people still “undervalue” his former colleague, for he is “a star.”

Some call Mnuchin a “Wall Street Democrat,” as he balances his ideology. He has gone against the administration at times, trying to dissuade Trump from launching a full-blown trade war with China and enforcing sanctions against Russia. He also has often found himself having to explain that Trump really didn’t mean what he just said or tweeted, like when he did damage control in Buenos Aires — when Mnuchin arrived for the Group of 20 finance ministers meeting, the president was on a Twitter tirade, lashing out at Europe and China about their currencies.

Alyssa Fisher is a news writer at the Forward. Email her at [email protected], or follow her on Twitter at @alyssalfisher

Engage

  • SHARE YOUR FEEDBACK

  • UPCOMING EVENT

    SKY & SCULPTURE

    Hybrid: Online and at the Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan

    Oct 2, 2022

    6:30 pm ET · 

    A Sukkah, IMKHA, created by artist Tobi Kahn, for the Marlene Meyerson JCC of Manhattan is an installation consisting of 13 interrelated sculpted painted wooden panels, constituting a single work of art. Join for a panel discussion with Rabbi Joanna Samuels, Chief Executive Director of the Marlene Meyerson JCC of Manhattan, Talya Zax, Innovation Editor of the Forward, and Tobi Kahn, Artist. Moderated by Mattie Kahn.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.